OUR FIRM IN THE NEWS:
- National Labor Relations Board closes Mattress Factory probe.The Mattress Factory and charging parties signed a settlement agreement with the NLRB, which requires a 60-day notice posting to employees. The notice posting affirms employees’ rights under the National Labor Relations Act, including the right to speak about the terms and conditions of employment, including sexual harassment, with coworkers. Ms. Block said of the NLRB filing that it is “always empowering to have your rights affirmed.” Read More.
- Mattress Factory settles with women who alleged retaliation for reporting sexual harassment. The settlement includes the hiring of an HR Director, an updated sexual harassment policy that is in line with EEOC recommendations, and annual training for all employees. “It’s always a victory for employees when they have a say in the policy that affects them,” said Megan Block, the attorney representing the complainants. Read More.
- Mattress Factory Staff Say Museum Downplayed Sexual Assault, Retaliated Against Critics. Megan Block represents four women who filed a charge against the contemporary art museum. Listen and Read More Here.
- Sexual harassment in Blue-Collar Workplaces. “A lot of these blue-collar women, they suffer in silence,” said Megan Block, an employment attorney in Pittsburgh. “They don’t have the choice, they don’t have the money, they don’t have the time.” Read More.
- Trump’s NLRB Appointments are Anti-Union. Mike Healey talks to Union Edge Radio about Trump’s recent picks for the federal labor board. Listen Here.
- Immigration Law, Sanctuary Cities, and the Legal Fight Against Discrimination. Mike Healey discusses the shifting political and legal landscapes for immigrants with Union Edge Radio. Listen Here.
- Where We Go From Here: 5 Key Ways to Build a Movement. Jules Lobel discusses how we harness the energy and outrage Trump has provoked to build a coherent movement for societal change. Read More.
- Vigilantes v. Voters. The real threat on Election Day is voter intimidation, not voter fraud. Read More.
- Solitary Confinement Drops 99%: Jules Lobel’s role as lead counsel in Ashker v. California led to a historic settlement agreement, which effectively ended long-term solitary confinement in California state prisons. Read More.
- Chipotle Ordered to Change Policies: The NLRB ordered Chipotle to amend four of its policies because they had a chilling effect on employees’ collective bargaining rights. Read More.
Pittsburgh’s History of Labor and Social Justice Activism Can Improve Police-Community Relations: Charles McCollester opines about how Pittsburgh can build on its strong labor and social justice tradition to become a national role model for a progressive and civilized community. Read More.
- Fast Food Workers Arrested for Demanding Higher Pay and a Union: The Wilkinsburg protests were part of a national day of action for the Fight for 15 campaign. Fast food workers planned demonstrations in 150 cities across the country. Read More.
- Worker Fired After Suing Former Employer: One week after a casino employee sued her former employer for retaliation, her new employer rescinded its offer. The employee filed an EEOC charge for retaliation against the new employer. Read More.
- Woman who threw bike during G-20 accepts probation: A Mount Washington woman accused of throwing her bicycle at a police officer during the G-20 Summit entered an Allegheny County court program this morning that will allow all the charges against her to be dismissed provided she successfully completes a nine-month period of probation. Read More.
- Probation given to 1 in G-20 protest: A Mt. Washington woman who gained Internet notoriety because of video footage that appeared to show her throwing a bike at a police officer during the G-20 summit demonstrations will spend nine months on probation, an Allegheny County judge ordered Friday. Read More.
- Global Village of the Damned: It’s hard to remember now, but in the weeks leading up to last September’s G-20 summit, officials warned that as many as 10,000 protesters might descend on Pittsburgh. Any number of them, breathless media accounts fretted, might come with feces to fling at police, or worse. Read More.
- ACLU Sues City Of Pittsburgh Over G-20 Mass Arrests: The American Civil Liberties Union of Pennsylvania filed a federal lawsuit today on behalf of 25 people who were swept up in a mass arrest of demonstrators, observers, and passersby in the Oakland neighborhood of Pittsburgh hours after the G-20 Summit ended on September 25, 2009. Read More.
- City sued over G-20 arrests: The American Civil Liberties Union today filed a federal suit against the city of Pittsburgh, Police Chief Nate Harper and more than 15 other police officers for allegedly violating the First Amendment rights of 25 people arrested on the final day of last year’s G-20 summit. Read More.
- ACLU Sues Pittsburgh Over G-20 Police Conduct: The American Civil Liberties Union of Pennsylvania has filed a lawsuit alleging police wrongly arrested and mistreated people during peaceful demonstrations at the G-20 economic summit in Pittsburgh last year. Read More.
- Chartiers Valley board OKs Whitfield settlement: A divided Chartiers Valley school board has approved a $205,000 settlement agreement with former assistant superintendent Tammy Whitfield, who is now superintendent of the Blairsville-Saltsburg School District in Indiana County. Read More.
- City worker says bosses interfered with investigations: An investigator with the city of Pittsburgh’s Office of Municipal Investigations filed a federal lawsuit late yesterday alleging that her supervisors improperly interfered with her work, disciplined her, and then left her “on the . . . payroll but with no work to do” for the past year. Read More.
- ACLU Files Suit On Behalf of Pittsburgh Man Arrested For Taping Police: The American Civil Liberties Union of Pennsylvania filed a lawsuit today on behalf of a Pittsburgh man who was arrested by University of Pittsburgh police earlier this year for recording an interaction between police and one of his friends. Read More.
- Court ruling on excessive force could restrict Taser use here: Lawyers expect a recent federal court ruling on Taser use in California to make its way into legal arguments over police brutality in Western Pennsylvania. Read More.
- Woman who investigates whistleblower cases blows whistle on city bosses: The city of Pittsburgh investigator in charge of probing retaliation complaints against city managers has sued her employer — for retaliation. Read More.
- DA’s office agrees to unusual settlement: The Allegheny County district attorney’s office has agreed to settle a federal lawsuit against it by redistributing a memo explaining that it is not against the law to videotape a police officer in the course of doing his duty. Read More.
- Dumpster-Diver Arrested For Taping Police On Phone Sues: The ACLU sued on behalf of a Hill District man Thursday, saying he was wrongly charged with violating state wiretap law when he recorded a police incident with his cell phone. Read More.
- Chartiers Valley legal case turns on free speech: The reinstatement of a Chartiers Valley School District official fired for testifying against a popular basketball coach is the latest pull in legal tug-of-wars over how much government agencies can control employees’ speech, says a legal expert. Read More.
- Bad Timing: After two days of testimony in his courtroom, Judge Robert C. Gallo seemed to realize that for some of those arrested in Oakland following last fall’s G-20 summit, their only offense was being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Read More.
- Pittsburgh G-20 Legal Update: Report for Rustbelt Radio: In October 2009, several people arrested during the Pittsburgh G-20 summit, who were charged with Disorderly Conduct and Failure to Disperse, had their first round of court appearances. On March 1st and 2nd, another round of court appearances were scheduled, including appeals. Nigel Parry reports for Rustbelt Radio. Read More.
- Civil Rights Groups Sue City Of Pittsburgh Over Harassment And Intimidation Of Activists During The G-20 Summit: The American Civil Liberties Union of Pennsylvania and the Center for Constitutional Rights announced today they have filed papers to expand and continue a civil rights lawsuit against the City of Pittsburgh, city officials and police officers for their repeated harassment and intimidation of two climate and environmental-justice organizations whose efforts to organize and support demonstrations during September’s G-20 Summit were completely frustrated. Read More.
- G-20 summit protest groups sue Pittsburgh for legal fees: Six activist groups that successfully sued the city after being denied protest permits before the G-20 summit filed a federal lawsuit Friday seeking to have Pittsburgh officials pay their $127,000 in attorneys’ fees. Read More.
- Whitfield sues in contract dispute with Chartiers Valley: The week before the start of a new school year is always hectic for Chartiers Valley Assistant Superintendent Tammy Whitfield, but this year is worse than usual. Dr. Whitfield, 46, a district employee for 21 years, sued the district and the school board Monday in U. S. District Court, alleging breach of contract, fraud, violation of the Pennsylvania School Code and First Amendment retaliation. Read More.
- U.S. News & World Report recognizes Healey Block as a Tier 1 Best Law Firm in Pittsburgh for Individual Employment Law and Union-Side Labor Law.
- Megan M. Block was named Political Compliance Chair of the Pennsylvania Chapter of the Sierra Club.
- Mike Healey was named to the Board of Directors of Action United of Pennsylvania.
- Mike Healey was named to the Board of Directors of the American Civil Liberties Union of Pennsylvania.
- Jules Lobel was named President of the Board of Directors of the Center for Constitutional Rights.
- AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka appointed Mike Healey to the AFL-CIO Lawyers Coordinating Committee Board of Directors in May of 2010.
- The PA Labor History Society presented Mike Healey with its Mother Jones Award at its annual dinner on September 9, 2010, for his work on behalf of working people but particularly on behalf of the United Mine Workers.
- On September 13, 2010, Glen Downey moderated the ACLU of Pittsburgh Discussion Series entitled: The Rights of G20 Protesters One Year Later.
- Mike Healey presented on election protection issues at the Regional AFL-CIO lawyers Coordinating Committee meeting in Philadelphia on September 30, 2010.
- Mike Healey will be speaking at PBI’s Employment Law West Seminar in Pittsburgh on November 17, 2010, on the topic “Layoff Litigation: Issues in a Rough Economy”.
- Mike Healey is being named again as one of the best labor and employment lawyers in the country (Best Lawyers in America, Woodward-White (2011) and as a Pennsylvania Super Lawyer.(Philadelphia Magazine, 2011)